«The Abbott and Costello Show» (№32). Bud Abbott, Lou Costello, Mary Beth Hughes, Max Baer, and Lou Nova in «Killer's Wife». Produced and Directed by Jean Yarbough. 1953. http://m-baer.narod.ru/index_en.htm
August 21, 2013 Subject:
Building the Television Archive
The Abbott and Costello Show (1952-1953) is a half hour sitcom that consists of slapstick comedy. It originally aired on CBS on December 5, 1952 for two seasons, but it did not air nationally. The actors both performed in burlesque shows and became a team in 1936. They became a popular duet with their skit "Who's On First" which aired on the Kate Smith Radio Show Hour. It wasn’t long before they starred in their own television show. The program was shot and produced on location at Hal Ranch Studios in Los Angeles, and the set was the same one used for Amos n’ Andy Show. The show is based on the characters Bud Abbott who plays the straight/normal friend of Lou Costello, the clown and clumsy one. The characters are unemployed actors that live in Mr. Field’s boarding house.
The episode “Killer’s Wife” was produced and directed by Jean Yarbough in 1953, through T.C.A. Productions. Max Baer played the character of Killer and Mary Beth Hughes plays his wife, Dixie. Although this is considered a family comedy, Killer (a boxer) is a possessive husband eager to beat up anyone who looks at his wife. In the opening scene Costello accidently lifts up Dixie’s dress with a large piece of wood, immediately Killer starts to attack him. He is only assured that Costello is no threat once he notices that he is overweight and Abbott assures him that he is timid and harmless. The narrative continues with Dixie asking Costello for help around her apartment (she is quite flirtatious with him). Naturally with his physical comedic timing, he continues to find himself in accidental altercations with Killer. Having no one left to train with and noticing that Costello can knock people out too (through his clumsiness), Killer’s trainer tricks him into being the new sparring partner.
As soon as Costello realizes what is happening at the boxing gym he is terrified. He uses slapstick comedy to demonstrate his fear. Dixie walks into the room and without noticing her presence he knocks her out with some weights. Playing on his fear, he tries to keep her standing and goes as far as tying a jump rope around her neck – which looks like he is choking her. He continues struggling with keeping her up and appears to grope her breasts. Not long after Killer returns to the gym and Dixie wakes up. Immediately Killer is ready to “kill” Costello, who is already conjuring up his next plan to protect himself- to which he easily knocks Killer out. Dixie shouts “You big bully” and then knocks Costello out with a bowling pin.
May 8, 2011 Subject:
Type of Work: Motion Picture
Registration Number / Date: PAu000110573 / 1979-04-23
Title: Killer’s wife / produced and directed by Jean Yarbrough.
Description: 1 film reel (ca. 30 min.) : sd., b&w ; 16 mm.
Series: The Abbott and Costello show ; no. 32
Notes: Deposit includes synopsis (1 p.)
Cast: Bud Abbott, Lou Costello.
Credits: Written by Clyde Bruckman; photography: Jack MacKenzie; film editor: Otho Lovering.
Copyright Claimant: T C A Television Corporation
Date of Creation: 1952
Authorship on Application: T C A Television Corporation, employer for hire.
Other Title: The Abbott and Costello show ; no. 32
Names: Yarbrough, Jean
TCA Television Corporation